Foreign aid cuts approved by House subcommittee

 

Severe cuts to foreign aid funding were pushed another step further in the House yesterday.  The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Foreign Affairs passed cuts proposed in last week’s legislative markup debate. 

Some of the deepest cuts suggested by appropriators include:

  • USAID Operating Expenses slashed  by 27 percent to $982.5 million (was $1.3 billion in FY2011)
  • Overall poverty-focused international development and humanitarian assistance cut by 13 percent to $13.95 billion (was $15.95 billion in FY2011)
  • Development Assistance cut by 18 percent to $2.1 billion (was $2.5 billion in FY2011) 
  • International Disaster Assistance: cut by 12 percent to $758 million (was $863 million in FY2011, $1.3 billion in FY2010 including emergency funding);
  • Contributions to multilateral efforts to combat climate change: Cut to zero from $248 million in FY2011, $388 million in FY2010.

The cuts also impose strict restrictions on funding to Pakistan, Egypt and Yemen.  They call for a reinstatement of the Mexico City Policy, which cuts aid for family planning organizations, prohibiting organizations providing information about abortions or performing abortions from receiving U.S. funds. 

Secretary Clinton was quoted by CNN as calling the cuts “debilitating to my efforts to carry out a considered foreign policy and diplomacy.”

For further information:

Washington Post article: House subcommittee approves foreign-aid cuts

CNN Article: Clinton pushes back on proposed bill to curb State Dept. operations

InterAction Statement: Foreign aid cuts would damage U.S. interests